Abnormal zinc metabolism in type II diabetes mellitus

William B. Kinlaw, Allen S. Levine, John E. Morley, Stephen E. Silvis, Craig J. McClain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

283 Scopus citations


Zinc metabolism in 20 patients with stable type II diabetes mellitus was investigated. Twenty-five percent of these patients had depressed serum zinc concentrations, and all demonstrated hyperzincurla. Urinary zinc loss was greater when proteinuria was present and correlated with the mean serum glucose concentration. Studies of gastrointestinal zinc absorption suggested zinc malabsorption in patients with type II diabetes mellitus. Glucose infusion in normal dogs produced hyperzincuria without a diminution in serum zinc. It is concluded that hyperzincuria, resulting from a glucose-mediated process that is not osmotic, interacts with impaired zinc absorption to produce zinc deficiency in patients with type II diabetes mellitus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)273-277
Number of pages5
JournalThe American Journal of Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1983


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